A New Yorker anthology provides a classy tribute to man's best friend.
With a foreword by Malcolm Gladwell (What the Dog Saw: And Other Adventures, 2009, etc.), who also authored a piece on Cesar Millan's methods of training out-of-control dogs, and new packaging for older pieces on dogs by great masters of the literary pen (James Thurber, Arthur Miller, Roald Dahl, John Updike and others), this beautiful volume is a winner. There are 18 reproduction covers on the subject of dogs spanning the period from 1933 to the present, a number of them standouts, ranging from the sentimental to the outright satirical. The essays are organized into sections on “Good Dogs,” “Bad Dogs,” “Top Dogs and “Underdogs,” and include a piece about Long Island's Buckram Beagles in the 1930s, a salute to Rin Tin Tin, an essay about dog racing in the U.K. in the 1950s, a profile of Leona Helmsley and her bequests, which have helped establish legal rights for dogs, and an article on the New Tabernacle Baptist Church Urban Hunting Club. These contributions are interleaved with poems about dogs (five of which contain different versions of their authors' drafts), editorial cartoons and nine full-page pictures of doggy subjects. The list is long and impressive, but other notable contributors include E.B. White, Ogden Nash, Donald Barthelme, A.J. Liebling, George W.S. Trow, Donald Hall, Roddy Doyle, Jerome Groopman, Ian Frazier, Jim Shepard, Adam Gopnik, Susan Orlean, Roger Angell, T.C. Boyle, Joan Acocella and Jonathan Lethem.
A real treat for New Yorker fans and dog lovers alike.